"I Ate 7 Sofas Last Year" Fla. Woman Cannot Stop Eating Couches [VIDEO]
BRADENTON, Fla. ĖďA couch a day!Ē ---A Florida woman diagnosed with a rare eating disorder says she cannot stop herself from eating couch cushions.
Adele Edwards, 31, says sheís been eating the foam inside couch cushions for 21 years, and if she doesnít stop itís going to kill her.
Edwards who began eating couch at the age of ten says she dines on couch pieces 15 times per day and consumes the equivalent of a throw pillow a week.
'In the last year Iíve eaten seven sofas; I unzip the cushions and snack on the foam inside. And once I start, I just canít stop.Ē Edward admits during the TLC program, ďMy Strange Addictions.Ē
Pica is a disorder found most commonly in toddlers and pregnant women who lack certain nutrients, causing them to crave non-nutritive substances like chalk, coins, batteries and even dirt.
Sometimes itís caused by stress, and Adele admits her first time happened during a very emotional period in her life, when her parents were on the brink of divorce.
She said: 'My life was out of control at the time. I didnít understand my parents breaking up. This was something I could control.'
When her cousin decided to chew a piece of a sofa for fun, something in Adeleís head made her want to try it also.
She said: 'I was 10 years old. I liked the flavor; I liked the way it felt in my mouth. Twenty-one years later, Iíve eaten couch cushions every day since.'
The fact that her addiction has so much control over her bothers Edwards as she continues to seek help through therapy and hypnosis.
'Itís hard to try to get people to understand how bad this addiction is.Ē
'Iím aware of the life risks. Doctors have told me I could get a stomach blockage so bad Iíd go septic and my intestines could explode. That scares me.'
Three years ago, Miss Edwards woke up in the middle of the night in terrible agony.
Crying, she tried to get up, but collapsed by the side of her bed. She was rushed to a hospital, where doctors found a serious blockage in her lower intestine.
After six days with a tube down her throat trying to clear the impasse, doctors were preparing for major surgery to remove the obstruction.
Thankfully, doctors were able to clear the blockage with enhanced doses of laxatives instead of surgery.
'It was the most painful thing Iíve ever experienced,' she said.
'Iím scared to go back to the hospital for a blockage again.'
The blockage was the size of a grapefruit, and made of pure sofa.
However, the sudden medical emergency three years ago has done little to satisfy Edwardís hunger for sofa cushions. In fact, she has resorted to rubbing the cushion in dirt before eating it.
ďThe dirt makes it crunchier. Then I chew on it and swallow it.Ē
Edwards, who is in discussions to enter a therapy center in California for people with similar strange addictions, believes this is the time for her to be serious about quitting.
'Iíve been doing this almost my whole life, 21 years. Itís consumed me. Itís putting my life and family at risk. Iím trying to stop this.'